The imposing facade of the Hôtel de Ville, the City Hall of Paris, is familiar from countless tourist photos and news reports.  Here are some of the details that are easy to overlook.

 

 

The first Hôtel de Ville was built on this site in 1357.  The medieval building, modified and extended over the centuries, was the focal point of many of the major events in French history, up until 1871 when it was burnt down in a fire started by a group of communards.  The Hôtel de Ville was rebuilt between 1874 and 1882 by architects Théodore Ballu and Edouard Deperthe in a neo-renaissance style inspired by the original building.

Click on any photo to view the gallery.

This post is linked to Thursday Doors, a collection of ordinary and extraordinary doors around the world.